Greetings from Austin, Texas

I’m 49 and have been interested in memory since college. I’m wanting to sharpen up my memory to store useful larger numbers, grocery lists, and day-to-day memory tasks. I got back into it after watching that Memory Competition documentary on Netflix, with Ben P., Nelson D., and the awesome Yanjaa W.

I compete in competition forecasting, and really could use methods to store tidbits to improve my judgement calls that I can stack on top of statistical analysis.

Years ago, I tried to read the Memory Book by Lucas my Sophomore year but gave up on the Major system then. Seems really weird and too much work. I retained the knowledge of remember faces from it, and used that for decades, but I remember throwing the book away in disgust after college.

So here I am again, full circle!



I’d encourage you to give Major another try. I too was put off by it when reading The Memory Book back in the 70s, but I’ve since gone back to it and found it much easier to assimilate at this point in my life. And the ability it gives you to easily memorize numbers is well worth any effort, in my opinion.

Of course, some find the Dominic method better suited to their personalities. So that’s also an option—and not one that was covered in Harry Lorayne and Jerry Lucas’s book.

For a fantastic journalistic overview of memory techniques and competitions, I’d encourage you to read Joshua Foer’s Moonwalking with Einstein.



There’s a how to memorize numbers page that shows a few different techniques. If you end up trying the Major System again, there is a page in the wiki about the Major System along with some Major System Examples.

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I should state, that a few of weeks ago, I learned the Major System. Then spent 2 weeks creating a 2 digit PAO system and setting it to a dedicated memory palace. It works, slowly, but I think use and practice will get it speedy. I also chose to use 01-40 for cards as well, plus I manually added PAO to the Jacks, Queens and Kings. So I think I have cards covered, not that it will be of much use in real life.

As for books, I have bought Nelson Dellis’ book, ‘Remember It!’ As a former bookstore owner, the book is well made, designed, and produced. Heavy paper, color, flowing design, durable spine. Designed by a man who expects his book to be abused in service. Still reading it.

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The Major System is an investment. It may take a couple of months before it becomes useful. But it’s absolutely worth it. It’s a bit like learning a mini language or learning to type. Painful and slow at first but soon becomes transparent.

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